Fillings are used to restore areas of your tooth affected by decay or fracture. At VanDerhoef Smiles we are committed to filling your teeth only with materials that most closely mimic nature. This means we choose to restore fillings with a composite material that looks and functions like your natural tooth.
First, Dr. VanDerhoef or Dr. Lee will answer any questions you have and will apply anesthetic to the tooth requiring the filling. Then, they will thoroughly remove the decay that is present and prepare the tooth for a composite filling.
Reasons for Fillings
Composite fillings provide good durability and resistance to fracture in small-to-mid size restorations that need to withstand moderate chewing pressure. In addition to being more aesthetically pleasing, composite fillings are "bonded" or attached with adhesive directly to the tooth surface. This often allows for a more conservative repair than traditional fillings with their inability to bond to the tooth structure. Since traditional fillings do not bond to the tooth, amalgam is packed into the tooth, and may loosen over time. Amalgam fillings often require that more tooth structure be removed to create a space that will hold the filling in place.
Composite fillings require that the tooth be kept clean and dry during the entire filling process, and they are subject to stain and discoloration over time. The life expectancy of a white filling can depend greatly on where it is in your mouth and how heavily your teeth come together when you bite.
Composite filling material is also commonly used to repair front teeth that have chipped or worn. Where possible, aesthetic bonding of composite material to front teeth is generally much less expensive than veneers or crowns. However, bonding typically does not last as long as veneers or crowns.
If your tooth is sensitive for a week or more it is important to call our office at (425) 462-0756 so we can examine the tooth and determine if additional treatment is needed.